Bruxism is commonly known as teeth grinding. If you experience teeth clenching and grinding, then you need not be afraid. An estimated 8% of the population are victims of sleep bruxism. Another 20% suffer from awake bruxism. This condition may not be easy to treat as it is caused by stress. Its symptoms are tooth damage, insomnia, and facial pain. You may find yourself looking for ways of treating these symptoms instead of a full cure.
One of the ways suggested by most dentists for reducing the symptoms of teeth grinding is the use of dental guards. Dental guards reduce these symptoms in the following ways.
The main benefit of the dental guards is the protection that it gives your tooth enamel. Depending on the severity of the bruxism, you may choose a soft rubber teeth guard which is preferable if you clench rather than grind. The other choice can be the hybrid laminate guards that have a soft interior and a hard exterior which is excellent for those who experience moderate grinding. There is also the hard acrylic guard which is the best for heavy grinding. All these guards provide a layer between the teeth which prevents grinding together as well as eroding the tooth enamel. You can change your teeth guard when it is ground down.
The tooth is made of a layer of hard protective enamel that covers a layer of dentin that protects the cluster of blood vessels and nerves. Both the dentine and enamel can get eroded to expose the vessels and pulps of nerves. This may cause intense pain which can be solved by wearing dental guards.
Cushioning Jaw Muscles
Waking up in the morning with pain around your jaw and cheeks is one of the signs of grinding or clenching teeth. The jaw muscles are strong and can exert a force of up to 1300N, so they will hurt if they grind for an entire night. Dual laminate or soft rubber dental guards offer a layer of cushioning between the lower and the upper teeth. This helps to protect your jaw muscles from the tension.
Reducing Grinding Frequency
Besides preventing bruxism symptoms, dental guards can also help by reducing the frequency of the teeth clenching and grinding. These guards lessen the intensity and frequency grinding sessions. Combined with their relaxation techniques, wearing these guards provides the best chance to reduce the symptoms and decrease intensity and frequency of grinding episodes. They can also help to improve the alignment of your teeth
Bruxism has no easy cure, but you can protect yourself from its symptoms. Wearing these dental guards provides a tough layer between the teeth that prevents the destruction of the tooth enamel and cushioning the jaws to ease the facial muscle pain. You can even reduce daytime grinding by wearing the thin flexible dental guards.